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The XFL may be back, but the DC Defenders’ beer snake is not

Free the snake

XFL: New York Guardians at DC Defenders Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The XFL is back. After the league was shut down during 2020, at the height of the pandemic, the XFL returned to the field this week under new ownership. The new iteration of the league is owned by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Dany Garcia, and a RedBird Capital, who purchased the league from Vince McMahon for just $15M.

While the league might be back, its greatest tradition is not.

The DC Defenders’ beer snake.

Back in 2020 before the XFL suspended play due to COVID, the Defenders were 3-2, tied for first place in the XFL’s East Division. And Audi Field, where the Defenders played their homes games, was rocking for every contest. With the main feature of each game a feat of fan engineering.

The beer snake:

Unfortunately, the beer snake has not made it to the new version of the XFL. The Defenders are back, but at their home opener tonight against the Seattle Sea Dragons, efforts to duplicate the beer snake days of glory were met by resistance from security:

The fans, however, revolted. And threw lemons on the field:

That’s right, lemons:

Following the lemons, the chants for “beer snake” rang throughout Audi Field, and #FreeTheSnake began to trend on social media:

ESPN’s Stormy Buonantony, working hte sideline for the ESPN broadcast of the game, went into the end zone to speak with the fans:

“But if you don’t give us beer snake, we’re gonna continue to give you lemons here.”

Just absolutely incredible.

Free the snake.